Just before the end of the year, Lucia Vega Jiminez took her own life while in immigration detention at the Vancouver airport. That a young woman in good health would take her own life is deeply unsettling, and an inconsolable loss to those who loved her. Beyond this, there are at least four things seriously troubling about this story that all Canadians should be concerned about.
The Canada Border Services Agency just announced that it had deported 16,511 people in 2011-2012, dubbing it a "milestone year." Every year tens of thousands of migrant workers are coerced to leave after getting hurt on the job or because their work permits are revoked or have been completed. This is euphemistically called "repatriations." Canada is implementing a revolving door immigration policy, with high deportations and a shift to migrant work. It is clear to see who is paying the cost of these policies. Are we okay with this? It's time we slow this down.